28 October, 2013

Some works

We are having an art show in 2 weeks and we needed to have a short project with work that we could hang.  The original idea that the teachers came up with last year was to have a craft show...but it's been whittled down by the administration to a nice tame art show.  I was at a bit of a loss with what to do, and almost spur of the moment last week came up with this idea for my KG2s (5-6 year olds).  I asked them to draw something that lives under the sea for their warm up sketch in their sketch books.  Of course, I was thinking along the lines of fish and whales and sharks etc...but I also got a lot of mermaids.  We talked about what they had drawn in their sketch books and I showed some examples of the different ways they had done it.  Then I broke out the oil pastels and they got to draw it again (after I had shown them some various ways of using oil pastels).  This was a new medium for most of them and they really enjoyed the texture of them.

This class is broken down into 2 40 minute classes rather than one 80 min, which can be frustrating at times but was good for this particular task as it meant I could get them doing their painting the next lesson.  I used watered down water colour inks and showed them some techniques.  I only gave them blue and green to use.  We also tried using some salt sprinkled on top as I've seen that used to good effect, but it didn't really work so well.  I persevered with it, though, as we had been talking about how the sea water is salty, so I thought it fitted.  We also did some water drops on them.  

It was actually really effective and they look wonderful. All kinds of sea creatures are represented.  I can't wait to hang them for the show.
 For all my KG1 classes, I wanted to some group pieces as there are 9 classes and with 21 kids in each class, that becomes a LOT of work to hang.  So I made my own "stamp pads" with a sponge in the bottom of a plastic container and paint poured over it.  They worked quite well actually, as long as I could convince the kids that they were able to get up enough paint from pressing it on the stamp pad rather than lifting it up to get to the paint underneath!

I spent a week collecting all kinds of found objects...lids, toys, bits of foam, strainers, cellulite massager etc (I went to a cheap store and just got anything I thought would be good for mark making).
 The kids worked in groups of around 5 for about 5 minutes (this is a 40 minute class and I've started going around to the classrooms so with set up and clean up that gave me around 20 minutes).  While one group was stamping, the other kids had play dough (the stuff I made at the beginning of the year which although is a revolting colour now having been all mixed together, still is pliable and nice to work with - I had worried it would go mouldy) and the same kinds of found objects to experiment with.
 The paintings look great, and the kids had so much fun with both the paint and the play dough.  I really like the connection with mark making with different mediums.  I have one more class to do this with this week, and then I will have a lot of group prints to hang with them.

I'm not sure what I'm doing with my grade 1 class...something we can finish in one lesson, and my 4th grade class will be using the work they are doing as our tessellation/Escher unit.


  1. Wow they must LOVE coming to your class and feel inspired. I wonder whether it carries over to home? Have the parents said anything? mum xxx

  2. Wow they must LOVE coming to your class and feel inspired. I wonder whether it carries over to home? Have the parents said anything? mum xxx


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